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Grand Cayman – Dives 40 and 41

Well, this is embarrassingly late. But I guess I haven’t done any dives since, so at least it’s not out of order. Back in January, on the cruise part of our vacation, the husband and I did two dives on Grand Cayman. They were lunch dives because our ship arrived too late for the early morning ones, but it was still great out. We spent the morning poking about in the museum in George Town, which was tiny but interesting. I hadn’t realized that people invaded the island and drove several species extinct. I guess I shouldn’t really be surprised – people do that sort of thing. It was disappointing – crocodiles and turtles are really interesting and there are kinds we’ll never see again.

On our way out to the first wall site, the crew of the boat gave us a primer on what we could expect. I’m always asking about nudibranchs now since most of my fellow divers are less interested in the little stuff so the guides tend not to point it out. They do always seem thrilled that I’m excited about tiny slugs though. They also shared stories about the lionfish incursion. It seems that the locals have now been forbidden from killing the lionfish and feeding the morays because the morays are too stupid. Those that are fed dead lionfish never learn to hunt the live ones – they can only associate those already killed with food. They’ll actually go up to a lionfish and wait for someone to kill it for them. The experiment is working though – the morays that have never been fed are now hunting the fish successfully so hopefully that slows the loinfish invasion  and damage to endemic species.

Wall dive

The first location was a wall. We started in the coral and rocks at 50 feet and went down the shelf a bit to about a hundred. On a shelf that drops down to 7000 feet below the surface, we barely went anywhere (we maxed at 97 feet) but it was fascinating all the same. the wall wasn’t steep so we had a good chance to examine all the life around us. Also, I’m really slow and examine all of the tiny things while moving around. We did manage to see a hornbill turtle and I got to follow a Southern stingray for a while. I try really hard not to make them feel chased, but following and watching the motions of these guys is just fascinating. There were a couple of little overhangs that almost made tunnels which was fun. I love looking up to see what’s on the under side of an overhang.

Kittiwake

Diving inside the deliberately submerged USS Kittiwake was nothing at all like diving the wreck on Grenada. The Kittiwake had all its doors removed so you could move freely about and we went everywhere. Diving inside a submerged bathroom and seeing myself in the mirror was a huge trip. All the little things, including the bubbles coalescing on the ceiling, were so very different from normal diving. I can totally see why people want to do this all the time. I definitely want to find more wrecks to explore in the future. I could have stayed much longer exploring but we had to get back on the boat or miss our ride home.

Gear

  • Shortie wetsuit and cap
  • Aluminum tank
  • Apollo split & springloaded fins
  • 16 pounds
  • Ziegler Ranger BC
  • molded mouthpiece (still loving it)
  • Heated shirt
  • Light

Dive 1

  • 83F
  • Max depth: 97 feet
  • 40 minutes

Surface Interval: 41 minutes

Dive 2

  • Max depth: 64′
  • 41 minutes

 

Crossposted from Journey to the Center, comment here or there with OpenID.
Tags:

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Highly highly recommend the Thistlegorm in Egypt for your next wreck dive.

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